In history, moments repeat themselves on a blueprint of blurry facts and images. Tragedies of the past come back again and again, cloaked in different guises, but the message remains the same: we are trapped in a web from which we cannot extricate ourselves. But with activity and violent revolt, the system’s eternal press can be halted, reversed even. There is no reason to believe that the way things are is the way they should be — we are merely conditioned to believe this by a repressive reality that keeps exploitation and selfishness in business. In this week’s scene, we highlight one way to slow the grind — beauty — but more is needed in order to envision a brighter future.
But we cannot forget those who have come under attack for their own violent revolt. Though some of us may not believe in their cause, these men, such as Joe Metzger ’11 have lived a life of action that we have not. This action is not simply reserved to the battlefields of foreign countries; it is a lifetime commitment to personal change and experience. While we may never be able to extricate ourselves from the fabric of human history, we are able to create our own fates through the beautiful opportunities life presents.
If beauty is power descended from the mountain, Justine Kolata has cupped the buds of justice in her hand to plant a hundred hyacinths on the slopes of the Yalian Matterhorn. In the name of Justice, there is a being that walks among us in a cloud of perfume. That was then. Will her flowers blossom in the spring?
There was the scribe and then there was a person drawing grotesques in the margins of the ancient manuscripts. Today there is scene: Natalie Ginsberg creates meaning from pubic hairs, and monstrousity is made aperitive in the posthuman musings of Jee Bijan. Has the hirsute woman of 1420 replaced her bestial fur with posthuman plastic skins? Abject externalities still impel the urge for self-improvement.